Idaho abortion laws overturned
A federal judge overturns 3 Idaho laws restricting abortions. Video by IdahoOnYourSide.comvideo
A major court ruling regarding abortion laws in Idaho could have implications across the country.
A federal judge ruled that Idaho's fetal pain law banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy is unconstitutional.
Idaho is the first of ten states nationwide to have such a law overturned.
Idaho's law banned abortions after 20 weeks... because experts say that's when the fetus might be able to feel pain.
Judge Lynn Winmill said the law placed an undue burden on a woman's right to have an abortion.
"What the judge said is what we know, these laws are unconstitutional and not based on medicine but politics." says Hannah Brass Greer of Planned Parenthood.
"This is a human rights issue. That's what this is about. There is scientific data and studies that clearly show preborn babies can feel pain." responds Brandi Swindell, President of Stanton Health Care.
The ruling comes as Arkansas becomes the latest to pass a fetal pain law.
It's the most restrictive in the country allowing abortions only up to 12 weeks of pregnancy.
"We're seeing these passed throughout the nation." says Swindell
"An attempt to do an end around Roe vs. Wade," responds Brass Greer.
Winmill also ruled against a law that requires women who use abortion pills, to do so in the presence of a doctor.
And requires that second trimester abortions be performed in a hospital.
"This is deeply troubling, this is not a win for women. This is not a win for the state of Idaho," says Swindell, "There could be an appeal to the Supreme Court. Maybe that's where it has to go."
But pro choice supporters say the fact that Idaho's legislature seems to be avoiding the abortion issue is a sign of a momentum swing.
"I think because hopefully the legislature is starting to listen and now not only do we have voters talking about it but a court order confirming that. " says Brass Greer.
Judge Winmill's 42 page decision took the Idaho legislature to task for the motives for passing the abortion law.
He said he found compelling evidence of the legislature's improper purpose in enacting it.